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Paname French Restaurant : A Review

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If you know me, then you know that I'm obsessed with France - Paris specifically.  So going to Paname Restaurant was a great experience for me.  Paname is the slang word for Paris, similar to how The Big Apple is slang for New York City.  I've never heard of that before and it was an interesting fact.

I was excited to get the opportunity to check out Paname and the lovely menu.  Chef Bernard Ros opened Paname in November 2014.  He is the owner, executive chef, pastry chef, and wine director!  Paname features an eclectic selection of updated classic French bistro dishes with a modern flair.  They are open every night for dinner, weekday lunch, weekend brunch, and an all day happy hour 12-7.  They don't offer delivery, but they do offer onsite and offsite catering. Paname is located in Upper East Side in New York City, on 2nd Avenue between 56 and 57th streets.

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Upon walking into the restaurant, I entered an intimate space which was decorated eclectically with Art Nouveau decor.  There are framed Parisian Art Nouveau paintings, classic wood bistro chairs, and wooden tables with crisp tablecloths.  The dining room seats 60 people and I'm pleased to say that you don't feel as if you're crammed into the space, as you may feel in other NY restaurants.

As we are approaching May and Mother's Day, you should be aware that Paname is planning to have a Mother's Day special menu with 3 courses for $40.  The menu can be found here.  So if you're wondering where to take your mom for her upcoming special day, here's your answer!  But don't forget about the regular menu too - see below!

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We started off with a plate of Amuse Bouche, which are little bite-sized hors d'oeuvres that Chef Bernard sometimes serves in between courses.  They aren't available on the menu, as Chef Bernard creates a variety of these on an ad hoc basis.  This amuse bouche platter consisted of a sardine pastry bite, a mushroom bite, and a cracker spread with a bit of Roquefort cheese.

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For an appetizer, we decided to order the Baby Octopus with White Beans.  I will confess that I'd never had octopus before but I decided to change that once and for all.  The octopus was very tender and the sauce was rich and savory.  I'm usually not a fan of beans, but the white beans were delicious as well.  I would definitely recommend this dish as a unique appetizer.  

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For our first entree, we started off with a Bouillabaisse with Shrimp, Cod, Clams, and Mussels.  This broth was very tasty and rich.  We were also given bread as well and I really enjoyed dipping my bread to absorb the sauce.  This bouillabaisse takes about 2-3 days to make.  It takes a whole day to reduce the broth to get to this level of richness.  If you're interested in a tasty, robust dish, then this is the one for you.

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Our next entree was the Oven-Roasted Duck with Barley and Mango Coulis.  This duck was so tender and moist that we could "cut" it with a fork.  It was served with a sweet mango sauce on the side.  Chef Bernard mentioned that the duck is cooked over the course of 3.5 hours!

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Our final entree was the Beef Bourguignon.  This is actually not on the written menu, but it is available every day.  Many places that serve beef bourguignon only serve it one day a week because it takes so long to make, but you don't have to worry about that at Paname!  This dish is made over the course of 2-3 days, so it's also rich and the meat is tender and falling apart.  The beef is served over mashed potatoes which soak up the stew to round out a delicious meal.

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Paname serves a variety of homemade and unique ice creams.  The night we went, we were treated to homemade rose ice cream.  I adore rose scents and flavors, so I found this quite delightful.  Chef Bernard will change up the flavors over time, so you might not get the same ice cream twice!

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For dessert, we chose a few items.  We had the classic Creme Brulee which was a sweet and crunchy treat.

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We also tried a molten chocolate volcano cake.  The cake was made of decadent chocolate, with a liquid chocolate in the center.  It was fabulous!  And look at that presentation!

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Finally, we tried the Apple Tart, as the French are known for their ability to make amazing tarts.  This was no exception.  The pastry was crisp and flaky and topped with a dollop of sweet vanilla ice cream for contrast.

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To get a rare taste of true Parisian food in the middle of NYC, I would recommend visiting Paname to check out the French fare.  I had an excellent dinner and I would truly go back again to try all the other dishes and sauces that I didn't taste on this visit.

*Disclaimer - I was provided with this meal in exchange for my opinion.  All opinions above are my own.

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